Thursday, March 15, 2012

One-A-Day Challenge: Spring Cleaning

Ask me how I got my shower door so clean
How are you doing on your spring cleaning? I've been knocking things off my to-do list, and it's such a handy one that I thought I'd share it.

Just check off one item every day, and in three weeks you'll have thoroughly spring-cleaned your entire house--easy-peasy and I've included cheapskate tips where applicable! I recommend doing them in order; I've organized it as a top-to-bottom list so you won't end up dusting off your ceiling fan right after you vacuum. . .No, I haven't done that, why do you ask? Um, heh. . .


Spring Cleaning Challenge

  1. Dust light fixtures and ceiling fans-- Microfiber Cleaning Cloths dampened with vinegar work well.
  2. Sweep cobwebs in corners and along the ceiling.
  3. Dust all horizontal surfaces—tops of doors, picture frames, shelves, baseboards, counters...
  4. Magic Eraser or spot-clean the walls.
  5. Wipe down circulating fans, wall, and floor vents with a cloth dampened with vinegar.
  6. Get a new  vacuum filter (seriously, when's the last time you did it?)
  7. Take everything off the bed and launder, including things you might wash less often like comforters or bedskirts.
  8. Sprinkle the mattress with Baking Soda and let sit for at least an hour, then vacuum it all up with the brush attachment. You can do this while your bedclothes are in the wash to save steps!
  9. Vacuum all upholstered furniture and vacuum or launder curtains.
  10. Take rugs and mats outside and beat with a broom handle.
  11. Vacuum the floor REALLY thoroughly before you put the rugs back down.
  12. Spot-clean the carpet.
  13. Give the kitchen a deep clean, especially the parts you usually skip (drip-pans, anyone?)
  14. Check expiration dates in your fridge, pantry, and medicine cabinet, and bring things to the front—or to the garbage!—accordingly.
  15. Give the bathroom(s) a deep clean, especially the parts you usually skip. Here's an easy, green method for the shower!
  16. Go through your make-up and throw out anything that smells funny or you never use.
  17. Wash windows inside and out. A mix of water and vinegar with a microfiber cloth work great!
  18. Scrub out all window tracks with soapy water and an old toothbrush.
  19. Go through your wardrobe and if there's things you never wear or have worn out either donate them or put them in a rag-bag (for craft projects!)
  20. Bring summer clothes to the front and hide winter clothes in the back.
  21. If you have a wool coat, bring it to the dry-cleaner's—I know, not cheap, but it's only once a year!
  22. Treat any dingy whites to a soak in vinegar or borax . Might be a good time to do the dishcloths, too!
  23. Polish and condition wood—anybody know a good green way to do this and nix the orange-glo?

There you have it, 23 steps to a majorly deep-cleaned house.

Shared at: Liz Marie: "Clean It!" Link Party

Tell me, is there anything I missed? What are your favorite spring cleaning rituals?

P.S. Affiliate links are embedded in this post. :) Feel free to support us while you stock up on home essentials!

283 comments:

  1. This list is motivating me. Problem is, it's the wrong time of day and I'm going out soon, and I'm sure by tomorrow the motivation will have evaporated. :-P

    About the orange glo--I heard a long time ago that some kind of nut oil (it was either almond or walnut) makes a good wood polish. Something for you to investigate.

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    Replies
    1. Hmm, I'd like to find something that worked that I didn't have to go out and buy. . .

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    2. It is the walnut oil. If you use an actual walnut on discolored wood, it actually fixes it. Its messy, but works great

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    3. Try this solution for wood cleaner:

      http://lifehacker.com/5828307/make-your-own-lemon-dusting-cloths

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    4. I read that tea is also a good wood floor cleaner and also makes it shine.

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    5. I found these recipes for wood polish on the DIY Network. http://www.diynetwork.com/decorating/polishing-wood-furniture/index.html

      Olive oil and white vinegar looks the easiest to me. :)

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    6. I use lemon oil on my floors and wood furniture. Moisturizes an cleans. I would recommend sweeping and maybe running a quick mop over floor first to save time cleaning with the oil. Looks AMAZING after though.

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    7. Duster
      - Spray Bottle
      - 1/4 tsp Lemon Juice
      - 1/2 tsp Olive Oil
      - 1/4 tsp Vinegar

      1. Combine equal parts of lemon juice and olive oil into your spray bottle
      2. Make sure you shake before each use, to blend the two ingredients together.
      3. Spray onto furniture and wipe down with a rag

      This stops dust sticking for even longer!
      Zoe
      www.mystudentfood.blogspot.com

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    8. I use coconut oil on my wood surfaces.

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    9. i use coconut oil on my wood it is amazing! I actually got an old plastic container and put in a few drops of lemon oil and rosemary as well to help clean and leave it smelling wonderful. Use a tiny dab a little will go a long way.. and polish it... Amazing shine and it is food grade, so totally safe

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    10. These products work well throughout the house. I can pretty much clean my entire house with just the intercare cleaner. I love that theres no fumes, and its eco friendly, and it WORKS! Its on Www.Marblelife.com the maxout cleaner works great for my driveway, and patio pavers too! Really the best cleaners I've ever found.

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  2. Thanks for posting such a great list! Spring cleaning can be so overwhelming if you don't have an efficient plan of action! This one looks awesome and I will be using it ASAP. Thanks again.

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  3. Like vacuuming the refrigerator coils.

    and it is lemon oil, or beeswax for wood

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Trudy!

      Confession: I have never vacuumed my refrigerator coils. . .

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    2. FYI - Some refrigerators do not need to have the coils vacuumed. I asked our refrigerator repair person and she said it depends on the model.

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    3. Good to know, thanks! Guess it bears investigation :)

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    4. Our condensor gave up one time. Told that had I vacuumed behind, under, and around the coils, it would have lasted longer.

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    5. Anonymous - your repair person was wrong. Even with a sealed back, you need to get down on your hands and knees - pull off the grill at the bottom front and prepare to be horrified. Every fridge needs to draw fresh air to remove the heat from the coils. That in turn draws every dust bunny in the vicinity under the fridge. You will need a long handled tool to get the wads of dust off the coils. Keep a vacuum running to grab the dust you pull off. If you don't turn the fridge off while you are doing this, you will find that the wads of fluff you pull off the coils just get sucked further back under the fridge. I managed to stick my long handled duster under and grab some of the fluff but I had to resort to a long cooking chopstick and a long handled paint brush to grab and pull wads of the fluff out. A snake like grabbing tool (for screws and odd bits you drop behind appliances) works best for maneuvering around the grating and coils under the fridge.

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  4. Thank you for sharing your tips and your list.:)

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  5. how did you get the shower door so clean? shower doors are such a nightmare.

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    Replies
    1. Cooking spray. Sounds crazy and I forget where I first saw it, but if you spray it on, leave it a minute or two to soak in, then thoroughly wipe/scrub it off with a paper-towel or two, it takes the soap scum right with it! Works better than anything else I've tried, and it lasts longer because it leaves a bit of a "non-stick" residue behind. :)

      Thanks for reading!

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    2. Also blue dawn and vinegar works like a charm too!!

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    3. Also oven cleaner gets the black marks off the bottom of the plastic built in tubs...

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    4. Does cooking spray work on shower and tubs as well as the doors?

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    5. I found this on Pinterest too.

      http://pinterest.com/pin/98305204336141024/

      Use a fabric softener sheet. get it wet and rub anywhere there is stubborn soap scum!

      They also work great for cleaning super dirty pots and pans.. I leave mine in the pot with some super hot water and the grime just melts off.

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    6. @Kase--I wouldn't recommend it! It would probably be a bit slick, especially used on the floor of a shower. Cooking spray gets through soap scum and hard-water on doors, but I'm not sure it would make much of a dent in regular tub dirt. :)

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    7. Cool, thanks PapaWheeliesB!

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    8. Lemon Oil also works great on shower doors, and smells wonderful.

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    9. I have used dryer sheets on the floor tiles in our shower before and it works well but I found a dollar store magic eraser worked even better the other day. additionally, we have been using either a little mineral oil or olive oil to buff our dining table and it gleams (at least until the next time we clean it) I will be trying the recipe above though!

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    10. Regular "paste" type toothpaste works well on shower doors also. And instead of a toothbrush for window/shower door tracks, I use a denture brush. The "pointy" part on the back is GREAT for those annoying corners.

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    11. Spray vinegar on shower doors and let it set for twenty minutes. Scrub the glass and wipe with a dry cloth. Treat door with rainex. It keeps the build up from coming back

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  6. Olive oil and lemon juice makes a good furniture polish. Just make sure to wipe the furniture with a dry rag once you polish so you don't get an oily build up.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, that sounds great! :) What proportions do you use?

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    2. I;ve used beeswax on furniture, and it leaves a great finish. Kind of the same theory as waxing your car once a year; it actually protects the wood in addition to a shine.

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  7. I'm sure most of you have seen this on Pinterest, but just in case you haven't-when you clean out your fridge, put press n seal saran wrap on the shelves so when stuff spills, you can just take off the press n seal and put more down-no more scrubbing the shelves! I love this trick!

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    Replies
    1. Love that trick! Works great

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    2. Yes, that is a neat trick but not at all eco friendly. Just wash them once a month and wipe when a spill accures. Thanks.

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  8. I found that a product called Bar Keeper's Friend (no kidding!) takes the grunge off of the bathtub. Just scrub with a brush or textured sponge.

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    Replies
    1. Wow! Never heard of it. :) Is it sold in most major retailers, do you think?

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    2. Yup! You can buy it in Wal-Mart. =)

      I swear by Barkeeper's Friend.

      It's great for stainless steel/ceramic anything. (We found it when we bought new stainless steel pots and pans. Used them once and even washed, they didn't look new anymore. BKF shined them right up. They looked like we'd just taken them out of the packaging.)

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    3. If you have white dishes (I have white Corelle) you can rub this on them and it takes away the gray marks that some utensils leave behind.

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    4. Barkeeper's Friend is also great for scrubbing our white cast-iron kitchen sink. The white gets black "dings" and scrapes in it from washing pots and pans. A good scrub w/ Barkeeper's friend polishes our 16 y/o sink so well it looks sparkly and new.

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    5. I wanted to add my endorsement to Barkeeper's Friend. We use it on a lot of things, most often our stainless steel pots and pans. It's a miracle worker.

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    6. Wow! Beginning to think I really need to get me some Barkeeper's Friend! :)

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    7. We also use Bar Keeper's Friend on our smooth top range! Works great!

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    8. Bar Keeper's friend is also the same kind of cleaner as Steel Glo (which is what I have at the moment)but is more readily available than Steel Glo. It IS a miracle worker on stainless steel for sure!! I have a stainless steel sink and sometimes it's just gross, but all I have to do is wipe it up with a little Steel Glo (or BKF) and it's almost like new!

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    9. Terri (A Goddess' Treasures)January 11, 2013 at 3:30 AM

      Used Bar Keepers friend to scrub a stainless Steele sink that was in a laundry room and had paint and rust and all kinds of grime on it. It had never been cleaned before to my knowledge. Bar Keepers Friend and green Scotch Bright scrubbers.

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  9. I've used bar keepers friend a lot when I was cleaning houses professionally. It works for SOME things but can be smudgy on others. Still...it is handy for sinks and other things, and definitely worth trying. :)

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  10. Orange glo can leave a nasty haze on your floor that has to be stripped by scrubbing with ammonia and water. We all know how amazing vinegar is so let's use it one more time by mixing 2 oz (1/4 cup) with 30oz warm water in a spray bottle. You can mist directly on floor or on dry rag. And wipe floor with clean cloths. (I use my swiffer for ease.)

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    Replies
    1. can the vinegar and water solution be used on hardwood floors?

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    2. Hi Dawn, I don't have wood floors to test it on myself, but I'd be cautious--I've read that vinegar can harm the finish on wood. :)

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    3. I will not use vinegar on my hardwood anymore after reading (and seeing images) of what it can do to the finish. Also, it can void any warranties if something happens.

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  11. Might add to the list scrubbing all light switch plates and door knobs. That's somehting I usually only do when someone in the family has been ill.

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    Replies
    1. I added that to #4...magic erasers work great on the switch plates!

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    2. I use clorox bleach wipes for door knobs faucet handles refridge handle,stove knobs,light switchs, phones etc. etc. Not only clean and whitens, it disinfects 99%. I do it often out of habit. We dont get sick hardly at all in my house. HONEST. Not that expensive.

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    3. Don't forget the chair rials.They get dirtier than you would think.

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  12. Lemon oil works great!

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  13. This is Great - I just printed it out and put it next to my calendar!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for reading, Martha, and good luck! :)

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  14. what a great list! thanks! one thing I think is missing though is cleaning the baseboards! those things get so dirty... :)

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    Replies
    1. Oops, you're totally right! :)

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    2. baseboards is in #3 for dusting, they probably do need a little more help than just dusting.

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    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    4. This may sound awful to some,but I use ammonia in water to clean floors floor boards, anything around the house. Especially in kitchen and bathroom. Cleans easy and removes odors in those rooms. I have used it for cleaning for years and years. Want windows cleaned? This mixture with microfiber, or paper towels work better and faster and cleaner then anything I have ever used. And I am in my 60s.

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    5. use bounce fabric sheets on base boards...it actually repels dust!!!

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    6. Terri (A Goddess' Treasures)January 11, 2013 at 3:34 AM

      I was going to add Baseboards to number 4 walls. It made sense to me. I was just going to use the Magic Eraser for it.

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  15. After cleaning the baseboards, rub them with a fabric softener sheet... It keeps them cleaner for longer. :)

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  16. My husband works with wood and swears by Murphy oil for wood it's the only thing he will let me use on any of our wood in our house. Vinager may strip the finish on your wood. Thanks for all the tips!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the caution about Vinegar! :) I know my mom always used Murphy Oil. . .

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  17. So I found you via pinterest, and I am sooooooo thankful for this list! We moved a year ago into a home where we can grow. That sounded so exciting, but it's proven to be extremely overwhelming when it comes to cleaning. I've wondered how in the world I'll ever get a good spring cleaning done around here, and I find myself standing in various rooms just staring at all that needs to be done. This list? It's awesome! I am printing it out and starting today! Can't wait!! Oh, and I really cannot wait to spray our shower door down with pam. Yay for great tips like that! And Borax in the tub. . . Okay, I'm done now. Thanks!

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    1. Great! :) I'm so glad to have helped. Clicked through to your blog and just have to say, Molly is SUCH a cutie!

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  18. eco wood polish via apartment therapy
    Ingredients
    1 lemon
    Olive oil
    Water

    Equipment
    Small container with air-tight lid
    Strainer
    Microfiber cloth

    Instructions
    1. Cut lemon in half and squeeze juice into container. I recommend straining the pulp and seeds.

    2. Add tablespoon of olive oil.

    3. Add tablespoon of water.

    4. Tighten lid and shake until emulsified.

    5. Pour small amount of polish onto cloth and begin wiping-down your furniture.

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  19. I love this one. . . I hope you don't mind me sharing the link on facebook ;o)

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    1. Thanks for reading, Annika! :) Feel free to share away!

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  20. Thank you! I can do one thing a day!

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  21. olive oil and lemon juice for the furniture polish.

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  22. Bar Keepers Friend is the best!!! I found it about 2 years ago and use it all the time.
    I live in the country and am to the point that I want to remove my shower doors because they always look so bad and I haven't been able to find anything to remove the the hard water from them. I am going to try the cooking spray today... Do you have any other ideas?
    This is a great blog! Keep up the good work, I know I will be a faithful follower from now on!!!!

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    Replies
    1. Aw, thanks!

      You know, I've tried a couple different things--borax, dishsoap, vinegar, regular bathroom cleaners. . .And the thing that has worked the best and lasted the longest is far and away the cooking spray. :) I also want to experiment with magic erasers, though I'm afraid they might leave a film. Let me know how it goes for you!

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    2. Marissa, The magic eraser works great on the bathtub but I have not tried it on the doors yet. It is the easiest thing that I have found, well ok my husband is the one that really discovered it. Thanks for your blogging.

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    3. Thanks for reading, netter528! :)

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    4. Dawn + vinegar is getting great reviews, have not tried it yet, but I don't have glass doors. here is a link http://lifecraftsandwhatever.blogspot.com/2012/01/dawn-vinegar-soap-scum-killa.html

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    5. I used the Dawn + vinegar treatment today....it worked great! Much better than most commercial cleaners I've used in the past.

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    6. We have black tile in our Master Bath. I have been fighting a losing battle with this tile for 9 years. I have bought every product with little to no success. That white soap scum shows horribly on tha black! Tried the vinegar and blue dawn last week. It was amazing. I watched all that build up I had been fighting for years dissapear with every swipe of my cloth!

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    7. They actually make a magic eraser just for the bath tub/shower. It works great and takes almost no elbow grease at all! :-)

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    8. Try a product called LemiShine. I picked it up in Walmart (USA only)

      http://www.lemishine.com/

      It cleans the mineral deposits out of dishwashers, washing machines and you could also dissolve it and use it on your shower doors.

      Joesbunny - for your tiles - put on a pair of rubber gloves to protect your hands and mix some Lysol toilet bowl cleaner with water - maybe 2 parts water and 1 part cleaner. Wipe your tiles down with a sponge soaked with this mixture. You will be amazed at how fast it cuts through scum. However, do not leave on stainless steel as it will darken it.

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  23. Love your list! Can't wait to start! Another thing I need to add to my spring cleaning list is cleaning under/behind the stove and fridge. It's always my least favorite/most needed chore!!! =)

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    1. Totally with you on the under/behind the stove and fridge thing, Jamie! :) Man, it's lucky if that EVER happens around here!

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    2. Don't forget under/behind the washer and dryer!

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    3. Also clean out the lint filter area of your dryer beyond the filter it's self. More important clean out the vent connection in the wall. I know of two fires where the lint built up in the wall caught fire from the dryer heat. This should be done at least every time you move into a new to you home and about every 5 years.

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  24. Love Love Love the spring cleaning list... When you put iron a list like this... I doesn't seem so overwhelming... Thanks, Terrell

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  25. Thanks for the thorough list! I've heard so much about how microfiber cloths are better than paper towel, and hold more of their weight in water/liquid! Green, too!

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    Replies
    1. I'm a big fan of microfiber cloths. :) They dry a surface well instead of just moving the liquid around (and streaking!) and don't leave lint! The only thing I don't use them for are oily jobs or nasty things like Goo-gone. Thanks for reading!

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  26. I use the "magic eraser" as a scrubbing tool when cleaning anything! Great for the tub, baseboards. Just spray your cleaner and scrub with the eraser. Makes it really white :)

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  27. Great List! I just bought one of those swiffer extender dusters and I love it! It works so well, especially on the new tvs, I hate how dusty they get! I also used the tip on using the baking soda to freshen our mattress, also great!

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  28. It's also a good idea to pull out the dryer and clean behind, in vent, underneath... it can be a fire hazard.

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    Replies
    1. Oh yes! :) I live in an apartment with communal laundry, so that's one that didn't occur to me.

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  29. I can not wait too print and laminate this list! Seeing it in list makes it feel easy to tackle! Love women like you who support the rest of us! Million thanks to you!

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  30. Have you ever heard on Norwex cleaning rags? There are tons of Norwex presentations on you tube. They are LIFE CHANGING!! You clean your entire house with the rags and water! They pick up bacteria and viruses and you just wash them in the washer. I never buy sprays or any chemicals to clean my house anymore! Check it out. If you are interested, leave a comment on my blog- chrisandshellystol.blogspot.com

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    Replies
    1. Huh! Another one I've never heard of! :) Thanks for sharing.

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    2. Norwex has a great spray for shower doors and tubs. Spray it one, wait a bit, then wipe it off. The build up just wipes off.

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    3. Norwex has a great spray for cleaning shower doors and bathtubs. Just spray in on, wait a bit then wipe it off. It is amazing.

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  31. I go through each room with wood-stain markers to touch up any knicks or scratches. LOVE them! They give your furniture a face lift!

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  32. olive oil and beeswax on wood- both are green :)

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  33. Great list! Here's a green wood cleaner recipe: http://www.crunchybetty.com/wonderfully-simple-homemade-wood-polish-recipe

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    Replies
    1. I love Crunchy Betty! :) That just popped up in my blog reader.

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  34. wow, this post kind of exploded. i found your blog through someone who put this post on pinterest and i got stuck here for about an hour. thanks for your thoughts!

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    Replies
    1. Ditto everything you just said, anna!

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    2. Terri (A Goddess' Treasures)January 11, 2013 at 3:41 AM

      I am having the exact same problem. LOL

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  35. I love your list - one addition to mine will be wash down all the kitchen cabinets. The get sticky/smudgy and I really only give them a proper scrub down once or twice a year.

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    Replies
    1. That's a good one, Kathy, thanks! :)

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    2. Terri (A Goddess' Treasures)January 11, 2013 at 3:43 AM

      My question is, how do I get the grease build up off the painted wall behind the stove without ruining the paint? I will be checking back for a reply. :D

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  36. So helpful and informative! I strongly recommend vacuuming out drawers, in the kitchen especially! thank you for being productive and helpful!!

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    Replies
    1. Good idea, drawers can get so nasty!

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  37. Good List. I'd add: Clean light fixtures and replace bulbs.
    (including ceiling fans) Deck Furniture & Grill.
    Front Door area ( sweep dust wash the outside & clean porch light). Also a good time to papers and tax stuff...
    I saw someone add in Dryer Maint.. Great idea.
    Now that i have one: wash down the baby furniture.

    Happy Cleaning Y'all

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  38. Thanks for all the great ideas!!! I saw your site on Fox 17 Nashville's morning show this morning and I love it!

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  39. Great list!!! I would add, clean your blinds.......like wipe down each individual blind:)Happy Spring Cleaning!

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  40. I was doing one last check of pinterest before going to bed and found this post. I was planning on spending most of tomorrow cleaning. Now I have a plan!! Thanks to you and some of your reader's comments. I hope you don't mind if I link to you so my friends can find your list too!

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  41. Another thing we add to our list is car care: empty out, vacuum, clean windows, wash, wax, engine service

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  42. Can't wait to try the cooking spray on the shower doors. When we remodeled our bathroom (that my husband and 2 boys use, no less)we installed clear glass shower doors. We have lots of iron in our well-water, so you can imagine what the doors look like! Hope this works! Great list, btw!

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    Replies
    1. We moved into a house with a clear glass shower that looked horrible! I've gotten into the habit of using a squeegee after every shower. Then I take a hand towel draped over the edge of the shower and wipe down all the glass. I can do the entire shower in about a minute and the only part I ever have to clean is the floor. Of course, getting the husband and kids to do this is pretty much impossible.

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    2. Amen to this...we do it all the time and I only give the shower an extra clean 1 or 2 times a year....I know it is hard wiht a lot in the family, but the last one to shower wipes it down..

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  43. I am hosting a challenge at http://www.100dayclutterchallenge.blogspot.com I can't wait to use some of these tips. I need to sprinkle my mattress with baking soda, great tip.

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  44. I am hosting a challenge at http://www.100dayclutterchallenge.blogspot.com I can't wait to use some of these tips. I need to sprinkle my mattress with baking soda, great tip.

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  45. Just wanted to mention about the Magic Erasers that they're basically a very fine sandpaper. Don't use them on areas they can dull! I used them to clean spots off the wall and the glossy paint is forever dull in those areas. Also my daughter's little table, it ruined the finish on that as well. Just an FYI before y'all go to town with those things!

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  46. For an all-purpose cleaner, try equal parts vinegar and ammonia and 1/2 part alcohol. I use this on everything -- windows, mirrors, tile, fixtures, sinks/baths, etc. Since this gets water spots off of chrome, I would imagine it would work on shower doors as well.

    Another thing for shower doors -- car wax.

    For wood, I use coconut oil or olive oil. I have used them both straight and skip the lemon.

    Don't use fabric softener on your cleaning rags, especially micro-fiber cloths!

    I am 3 windows away and one bedroom away from being finished with my spring cleaning.

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    Replies
    1. Car wax! How clever, I'd never have thought of that. :)

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  47. Oh, yeah -- I put the pillows in the dryer to kill dust mites and to fluff. I put each one in for 20 minutes on high.

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  48. Murphy oil soap for wood. I love that stuff! = )
    I also hear coconut oil is amazing. I plan on trying it in the near future.

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  49. there is this stuff you can get at lowes or home depot it beeswax and orange oil, really yummy for your wood furniture its called...howard feed and wax

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  50. Love this list! Thanks for the inspiration! I would also like to add: check fire extingushers, smoke alarms (change batteries) and air filters. Our A/C guy said to change the filters every 2 months especially since we have a toddler running around. Happy cleaning :)

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  51. This is really inspiring.

    I have some questions that hopefully someone here will have some tips to address:

    1) I have light colored grout in several areas of my home and have a really hard time getting it clean. Any suggestions?

    2) Any suggestions on how to take your rugs out and beat them? I don't really have a good place to hang mine outdoors (or indoors for that matter). I suppose I could enlist the help of friends but then they might really hate me.

    Would love to see you do an article of top items to keep in a household cleanup / fixup kit; things like the borax and bartenders friend and maybe even razor blades. The sort of things someone just setting up house could learn what they should have on hand from the experience of you and your readers.

    By the way red wine stains on carpet can be removed by immediately dousing with white wine. Crazy I know but something about it neutralizes the red wine and takes the color out. Won't help long term but if you catch it quickly it will help. Just thought of that because you mentioned your messy carpets.

    I would recommend adding two things to your list of things to do ...

    1) Changing your air filters on your HV/AC unit and cleaning the outside unit. Not only does this keep you from breathing in unpleasant things, it improves your energy costs.

    2) Keeping a running list of things in the house you find that are in disrepair so that you can make arrangements to call in workmen/women to repair items beyond your scope.

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    1. Thanks for all the ideas, Allie! :) The grout in my tub is needing some attention, so that's on my to-do list. I'll let you know if I make any discoveries.

      As for the rugs, hmm. . .Mine are small enough that I can just hold them up and give them a few good shakes. Do you have any old chairs you could haul out and drape them over?

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    2. A paste of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide will clean grout.

      Grout in the bathroom? I let the hot water run until the bathroom is steamy and clean with a microfiber cloth. Everything gets cleaned!

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    3. Terri (A Goddess' Treasures)January 11, 2013 at 4:01 AM

      For grout try ... 7 cups water, 1/2 cup baking soda, 1/3 cup ammonia (or lemon juice) and 1/4 cup vinegar for-the-home ... Or just mix some borax and vinegar into a paste.

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  52. You are so welcome.
    As for chairs, not big enough for my rugs. I might try propping them against my porch supports but still don't think that will do it. My rugs are about 5x 8 or the next size up and they are heavy shag ones... they may need to just be replaced because of all the dog stuff. (Recently went through potty training a puppy.)

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  53. Question.. We recently bought our home, it has lovely birch floors. So far I have only cleaned them with mild detergent and water. What else do I need to do to keep them clean and to maintain the finish? thanks

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    1. Well, I'm not expert on wood flooring, but you could check out the tips, dos, and don'ts at this link :): http://www.wfca.org/Pages/How-To-Clean-Hardwood-Floors.aspx

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  54. My spring cleaning was finished before the first day of spring. I have a couple of things to add as well as some that make other things easier…

    When doing #16, which i do every 6 months, don't forget to WASH your make-up brushes. Your skin is the largest organ on your body & brushes become contaminated with prolonged use. That goes for hair brushes as well.

    I go thru my closet every 3 months at the MOST & if I haven't worn it in 3-6 months it comes out & goes into either the "donate", "rag" or "throw away" pile. Plus I have a hard & fast rule, I do NOT add hangers to the closet… I keep extras on the rods for a few new purchases but generally if I buy something new, something old has to go. This way it stays "purged" automatically & it never gets cluttered.

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  55. Tired of streaky windows and mirrors? Combine half hydrogen peroxide and half water in a squirt bottle. Wouldn't recommend it on anything other than glass, mirrors and bathroom and kitchen counters. Cheap and effective.

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  56. Spring is the perfect time to spin your mattress. Fall is the time to flip it:D

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    1. Haha, love it! Thanks for sharing, Mrs. B. :)

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  57. LOVE this list - I also added reinforcing all the screws in drawers/cabinets/door handles and disinfecting all handles.

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  58. I would switch the order of #16 washing windows and #17 cleaning the window tracks so that your nice clean windows don't get dirty again. Also someone added cleaning your blinds, they also should be done before washing the windows for the same reason. Thanks for sharing your idea, great motivator.

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    1. That's smart! :) Come to think of it, I do remember having to touch up my windows after doing the tracks while I was brainstorming this list. . .

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  59. What about the washing down the moldings and walls? That is a very important step for spring cleaning. Touch up paint and scrubbing hard surface floors. Also, what about cleaning the silver and washing the Windows.

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  60. Also, you should clean your dishwasher if you have one. Clean the washing machine and dryer as well. In addition hold a weekend garage sale to get rid of all the clutter that is worth something. I like to clean my winter boots and shoes and put them in cloth bags so when the time comes to be winter ready they are clean and dust free. Also, its time to clean out the closets people as well as organizing the garage and basement. I would also recommend also fix the things that broke when you had the winter blues so you can have a stress free summer. Lastly, open those windows and let the air circulate as you clean, light a scented candle of two in every room and you will love the way your house smells and looks.

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    1. Thanks Shannon! :) You sound like an amazing housekeeper!

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  61. Regarding #6---about a month ago---they sell Febreeze scented vacuum filters---much nicer than smelling a musty old vacuum cleaner! :)

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  62. I am just wondering if anyone knows what i can do about getting minor stains out of a mattress. I have a 3 year old who occasionally wets the bed. i will need to buy her a new one but can not right now. she has even done this in my bed. i took warm water and oxy clean and scrubbed but the bed got very wet and i had to let it dry for 3 days with a fan going... i dont know what to do...

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    1. Have never had to deal with that myself, but have recently gone through potty training a dog and they make a ton of products for dealing with urine and feces. You might check one of these options. Also after letting the sprays sit for several hours so that the enzymes can work you might try using a shop vac to suck out as much of the moisture as possible so that you can reduce the amount of time it takes to dry.

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    2. Well, I'm not sure about your situation, precisely, but just the other day I was gifted with two VERY stained (but otherwise, attractive and useful) chairs from a poodle owner. I googled around for frugal upholstery cleaning ideas, and here's what ended up working for me:

      Mix 1/2 cup dishsoap and 1 cup water in a large bowl. Mix with a hand mixer (or an egg beater, I suppose would work) till it foams up into a lather. Take a rag, dollop this foam onto stains, and scrub it up really well. Then use something like a rubber spatula or firm, straight-edged object to scrape out the excess soap and moisture. Take another damp rag and blot.

      The chairs look miraculously almost good as new. This method worked well because using the foam instead of a straight cleaning solution made the chairs a lot less wet. I still set them in front of a fan to speed drying, but they were dry in a few hours.

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    3. As for the mattress. As my dog ages, she has more and more accidents. In the bed I saturate with bleach water, blot it up and use the hair dryer to dry, then spray with Lysol. I did purchase a waterproof mattress pad that has been a life saver. I HIGHLY recommend this.

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  63. #23 - - Lemon juice, lemon oil & a drop or two of olive oil. Or vinegar & a little olive oil.

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  64. As for the plastic mini blinds, you can fill your bathtub with soapy water and put them in one at a time and swish up and down to remove most dust, you may need to actually run a wash cloth over them if you neglect them like I do. Then hang up outside, I rinse them there with garden hose (you can wait and refill tub with clear water for rinsing if you don't have a hose), then hang to dry over a deck rail, clothesline, patio furniture lol, whatever you can find.

    Also if you have curtains that you are afraid to wash you can put them in a dryer on low for a bit. It takes the dust out of them. Kinda like the pillow theory.

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  65. Also it's time to tackle the cabinets. Wipe them down. Organize Spices, storage containers that are no good, or have lost their lids. Throw out anything expired, organize pots and pans, clean drawers etc. Also, pull out the oven and clean under it and the fridge too. Clean mini blinds and clean out storage and linen closets. It's a good time to do complete carpet shampooing. If you don't have a steam cleaner, the rug doctor is worth the rent. Get a can of air and dust out all your electronics. Keyboards, dvd player and gaming systems, cd changers etc. How about that sock drawer? Get rid of socks with no mates and socks with holes. Same with shoes. Toss them if they are worn out or if you don't wear them. It's also a good time to clean out the inside of your car. I think it's worth it to have it thoroughly detailed, but a good deep clean can be done yourself on a Saturday.

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    1. Thanks for all the tips, Amanda! :) I know my car sure needs a good cleaning...

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    2. Terri (A Goddess' Treasures)January 11, 2013 at 4:11 AM

      A lot of that is stuff that I have to put on my list. I LOVE this list, but for my family of five adults and a nine year old with 4 dogs with waterbeds for all people (even the nine year old) and so much clutter and neglect of the housework, I am using this as a base, rearranging it, and adding to it so that it can get done just as organized. And a little tip for anyone else who sleeps in waterbeds. Keep your water fresher for longer by adding Shock It for swimming pools. I don't recommend a whole package, but about a cup or two for a Queen and two or three for a King should do it. One more little tip that might help others ... http://diyhshp.blogspot.com/2011/11/how-to-clean-oven-glass-it-seriously-is.html Happy cleaning everyone. :D

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  66. Pull out the frig and stove and clean underneath both, vacuum the coils under the frig. Twice a year is better!

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  67. To polish wood, use mayonnaise. The smell will go away and wood will look shiny and beautiful.

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  68. Any ideas for repairing bronze shower fixtures that got hit with cleaning chemical not intended for bronze. Now they look like hard water spots all over and dull.

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  69. #6 needs to be at the top of my list. I took the vacuum cleaner apart AND put it back together... but did I bother to change the filter? Of course not. That would have made too much sense!

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  70. olive oil or almond oil with a few drops of lemon essential oil on a cloth for wood polishing.

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  71. Antique wax is the best way to preserve and polish wood furniture. It takes a little work but after it's done you only have to dry dust it and it will stay shiny and protected. Oils break down the wood fibers.

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    1. This is also how to restore wood furniture then it only has to be done 1-2 times a year.

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  72. For cleaning mattress,i use a spot cleaning machine, it costs a bit in the beginning,but has saved mattress and cleans up carpet spots.

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  73. for cleaning wood, use Murphy's oil soap....hope this helps and thank you for your helpful tips. Be blessed And have an awesome day ! :0)

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  74. For ink stains and tape residue on laminate sufaces, use a drop of hand sanitizer leave for a moment then wipe with a damp cloth :)

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  75. ok so how did you get your shower door so clean? I need to do mine (hard water spots and such)and I need ideas!
    Thanks!
    @DitziMamaShawna

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    1. I used cooking spray. Spray on, let it sit five minutes, wipe off with one rag and buff with another. It takes off soap scum like a dream and leaves a bit of a non-stick coating that discourages speedy re-build-up, but I'm not sure about hard water!

      This is just a hunch, since I don't have hard water problems, but do you think vinegar would dissolve it? Might be worth a try!

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  76. Not sure if this was already mentioned...Clean the grout on tiled surfaces

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  77. I like to get a toothbrush and clean the rubber strip on the door of my fridge and freezer. Since it's my fridge (I own my home), I don't want it to age or get moldy before its time and have to spend a lot of money replacing it!

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  78. How about changing batteries in smoke detectors?

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  79. I just used Duke's mayonnaise on my teak wood dining room table and got rid of all the white heat spots and water rings and it really does look almost new. I'd have never believed it would work, but it did for me!!!

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    Replies
    1. Terri (A Goddess' Treasures)January 11, 2013 at 4:13 AM

      Wow, need this one, thanks.

      Delete
  80. Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, do you think you could e-mail me?

    Brian

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  81. Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, do you think you could e-mail me?

    Brian

    ReplyDelete
  82. I may not follow exactly, but this is a darn good starting point to hit all the stuff that needs to be done.

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  83. How did you get your shower doors so clean??

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  84. I don't know if anyone has said this yet but another tip for dusting fans is instead of using a microfiber cloth, use an old pillowcase. You spray on the cleaner, slide the pillowcase on and pull it back. That way all the dust goes into the pillowcase and not into the air. I do this because I have really bad allergies and it also helps to keep me from sneezing while cleaning!
    Thanks for the great list!

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  85. You can also use Melaleaucs' own Sol-U-Mel it kills mold and bacteria on contact (if prepared correctly) and its chemical free all made with mother nature in mind! And it makes your home safe and smelling WONDERFUL!DON'T BUY IT ONLINE THEY MODIFY THE PRODUCT AND ITS NOT PURE!!!
    Want more info send me your name and phone# and best time to call you @ homewithbayla@yahoo.com
    Its the best thing I've ever done!

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  86. Great post...now Spring Cleaning would be so easy for me!

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  87. One of my favs is to clean cycle my dishwasher and clothes washer!

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